Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Cramming Is Detriment to Talent

Cramming Is Detriment to Talent

‘’Cramming is learning without knowledge’’ (Stanley Mourdaunth)
Terrible times need terrible measures. Exams are terrible times for those who learn by depending solely on there mnemonic devices. Let’s imagine a habitual crammer in a tight spot with limited amount of time to assimilate a great deal of information. He stays up all the night; drinks two pots of coffee until he cant see straight; fights with his nervous distractions; stares at the same pages again and again; falls asleep face down into a book; gets up in panic half an hour before the exam; freaks out in examination hall and fails miserably. Thus the knowledge acquired in a hurried manner has no long term utility and kills talent, too.
Cramming is anti-thesis of creativity. It inhibits constructive thinking and kills creativity which involves innovation, independent thinking and deep understanding. If education guarantees enlightenment then cramming saps the vitality of students. Education replaces an empty mind with an open one but cramming compacts human imaginations into a rind. Education is acquired through physical, mental, spiritual and intellectual pedagogies. Cramming is degenerated form of intellect because it hampers visionary approaches to learning, neglects physical and mental limitations, damages self confidence and, ultimately, the potential of learners.
Cramming takes a man up to university but cant make him think. Students are confined in schools and colleges for ten to fifteen years and at last come out with a belly full of words but they don’t know a thing intellectually. Top crammers despite having degrees stray here and there and remain unemployed because their heads are filled with straw and they can not creatively apply their knowledge. Albert Einstein puts it as under:
                        ‘’One had to cram all that stuff into ones mind  whether one likes it or not. This coercion had such a deterring effect on me that after I had passed my final examination I found my scientific knowledge still threatening me.’’

Cramming has been institutionalized through our schools, colleges and examination structures. Our teachers and examiners encourage mugging of books. They are misled by the false expression displayed by a dunce crammer. Our class-room culture and educational institutes promote cramming. Perhaps the dilemma made Mark Twain say:
                        ‘’I’ve never allowed my schools to interfere with my education.’’
Educationalists believe that nothing can be learnt, remembered or reproduced which is not attained by a slow and systematic assimilation. A recent study by University of Florida concludes that last minute preparation and cramming reduces overall retention of information and also damage mental abilities.
This brings us to conclude that cramming spoils educational development of human beings. It prevents creation of new ideas and formulation of new theories by inhibiting creativity, innovation and independent thinking. It also damages self confidence of our youth. Notwithstanding the harmful effects, cramming is becoming popular because our education system promotes it. In order to secure talent of our youth the infrastructure of cramming based on our educational system should be dismantled and replaced by a system which promotes or, at least, allows the talent to grow. Active learning individual and collective critical thinking through class discussions, study groups and presentations are more effective ways of grooming talent. 


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